SUNDR’s The Canvas Sea came as the result of a lot of prior thought, precise planning and a tight deadline. The entire project has had a careful approach to certain elements of it's creation which breathes life into the music, their performances and the way that the band interact with each other. Chatting over a few pints in a quiet Fitzroy pub, Scott Curtis, Troy Power, Adam Turcato and Dan Neumann - joined by their friend and tour manager for Japan Luke Frizon - all seem confident with the final product. Yet as Power and Curtis explain to LIFE IS NOISE, the calm air hanging over this moment and the completed album might not have even happened without Neumann's arrival.
Sundr are about to embark on a whirlwind tour through Japan, performing next to an impressive list of the country's heavy acts in the process. Japan has always been a hotbed for darker music, each with own unique, refined twists - yet uncovering these bands is a mild struggle unless you do your homework or have a few friends in the know. Thankfully, Sundr has gone ahead and done the digging for you. Plug in your headphones and have a listen to a couple of hot-takes from the tour's supporting acts – you might be surprised at what you find.
Whether they intended to do it or not (most likely not), BØG's second full length record, JIM, unintentionally evokes a wider reflection on sludge metal as a whole. While it’s a great listen by itself, there’s a palpable essence to the record as if it's divorcing itself from the scene it spawned from - like a cell that splits and mutates to give birth to something similar yet new. It may be due to trading off polished production for primal harshness – it may come from creating allegoric music that captures the highs and lows of an engaging story. However, the palpable difference that JIM offers is a carefully crafted and even matured approach to song-writing, riffwork and delivery.
Pallbearer’s Heartless saw a somewhat different writing process for the record, taking the band’s lyrical themes away from the metaphysical and targeting something more realistic. Brett Campbell spoke to LIFE IS NOISE about the writing process of Heartless along with the ideas of suffering and hope – the tools that help forge their evocative music.
We spend a couple of minutes with Triumphs ahead of their support slot for Pallbearer at San Fran in Wellington on July 9...
What are five words you’d use to describe your band?
Two Sad Boys Play Music
What’s been going on in the world of Triumphs?
We're putting finishing touches on our second record! It'll be out super soon. Other than that we've been playing a few out of town shows with some pals from up North, and we're looking to play out of town as much as possible. Book us in Australia (hint hint).
Cascades perform some of the most full-sounding sludge metal coming out of Australia at the moment - their soon-to-be-released self-titled debut LP offers a remarkable level of clean production and riffwork that you might expect out of an older band. Fluctuating between heavy and haunting, they’re an act that interestingly enough put environmental issues to the forefront of their music which makes for a nice change of pace against a scene that typically flirts with nihilistic introspection.
Guitarist/vocalist Liam White shared a few word with LIFE IS NOISE ahead of their support slot next to Bog for Pallbearer’s Thursday July 7 show at the Northcote Social Club.
LIFE IS NOISE Publicity is proud to announce the confirmed dates for SUNDR's upcoming tour - beginning in Japan before taking to Eastern Australian venues for four shows. The tour follows the release of the Melbourne act's highly anticipated sophomore album, The Canvas Sea, allowing the band to bring their haunting performances to the national and international stages.
The Melbourne Sludge/ambient four-piece will be playing shows in Hobart, Brisbane and Adelaide before finally wrapping up a long month and a half of touring at the final show in Melbourne.
The Canvas Sea is the product of conscious effort to create a larger picture that pushes past the music – employing cunning use of art, eerie stage presence and a culpable passion that needs to be seen, heard and felt to be truly understood. Because of this ethos, Sundr have gained a cult-like following amongst their peers – with a near hypnotic balance between huge sounding hard sections and ghostly ambience, every show draws in the audience like moths to flame. There’s a level of attention and care which follows into their live shows, offering one of the most atmospheric performances seen from an Australian sludge act in years.
In addition, Sundr will be supported by some of Australia’s finest underground heavy acts on every leg of the tour. This is one you don’t want to miss.
Catch Sundr at one of the following dates:
Saturday August 26 - The Brisbane Hotel, Hobart w/ DÉPARTE, CASCADES, BREAK THROUGH
Saturday September 9 - Fat Louie's, Brisbane w/ SIBERIAN HELL SOUNDS, EMPRESS
Saturday September 16 - The Crown and Anchor, Adelaide w/ TOMBSEALER, SWAMP LUNG, FAITHEATER
Saturday September 22 - The Old Bar, Melbourne - SUNDR/CASCADES Double LP Launch
Illimitable Dolor do not make happy or friendly music, but rather something mired in tar, blancing on a tightrope between forlorn vulnerability and seething hatred. The guitars weep over high, conquering riffs or charge with gnashing teeth into battle like war pigs - offering no grey areas or silent reprieves. LIFE IS NOISE shares a few words with guitarist/vocalist and keyboard player Stuart Prickett prior to their support slot with Pallbearer on Tuesday, July 4 at Manning Bar in Sydney.
With a catalogue of songs that can often seamlessly transition between math-like intensity and dust-ridden prog, Hashshashin take Middle Eastern influences and processes them into evocative, commanding music. nihsahshsaH is easily one of the best instrumental releases of 2016, owing in part to a crisp and seamless blend of Middle East meets West. It almost seemed obvious that a band which can flirt with those sounds would have interesting tastes in music (not to mention music in general as one of the members runs the excellent music label Art As Catharsis), so LIFE IS NOISE got in touch with Hashshashin to curate a playlist of songs prior to their support slot for Pallbearer on Tuesday, July 4 at Manning Bar in Sydney.
The end result: a list of songs that are, in some way, influencing the recording of their next album. Bouzouki player/guitarist Lachlan R. Dale and percussionist/ drummer/effects/digeridoo player Evan McGregor share these tunes. Listen on, friends.
LIFE IS NOISE is proud to present the video for I Still See Plagues, the first single from Sundr's upcoming sophomore album, The Canvas Sea.
Shot by Crowbar's Wilson Bambrick using footage from Melbourne, Brisbane and Kazakhstan, the video captures the story that Sundr sought to tell with "I Still See Plagues" - a story of observing your surroundings, especially in times of anxiety. The shots of the landscape follow the theme of observation to poignant effect. Elements of emptiness and alienation in suburban landscapes, nature knocked around in the breeze while everything else around it seemingly remains static - a sense of peace shredded to pieces by the terrifying haste of the world around it, something that's further challenged by the accompanying ominous music.
Holy Serpent boomerang between impressive guitar solos and fast paced riffs into slow, tar covered doom without issue. The contrasts between the two are fairly notable, but the ability to sucessfully fuse them together with break-neck tempo changes make for a breath of fresh air in a genre that can otherwise put an emphasis on drawn-out and somewhat less exciting tracks. In a phrase, Holy Serpent rip hard. LIFE IS NOISE shared a few words with guitarist Nick Donoughue ahead of their upcoming support slot with Pallbearer on Friday July 7 at the Northcote Social Club.
On their self-titled debut release, Melbourne’s Cascades deliver a smorgasbord of influences that are woven into their menacing, heavy brand of post-metal. The band showcase an awareness of dynamics with tracks are equally as savagely loud as they are subtle. With only 5 tracks in length rounding in at 35 minutes, Cascades’ sound may be experimental, but their structural approach to song-writing is fairly direct.
Any band who can make a 42 minute long romp of dusty, nasty sounding doom is well worth a listen. Agonhymn successfully check off those boxes and more. Blues Grind offers progressions that pace on like a marching army, quiet moments that lull over the music like wind over a desert and furious moments that aim to knock the teeth clean out of your head. It’s music that spans over many of metal’s glorious spectrums and does so with an element of ease. Life Is Noise took a few minutes to speak to guitarist Dav Byrne ahead of their upcoming support slot with Pallbearer on Friday July 7 at the Northcote Social Club.
Trumpeting Ecstasy is an album that could make you black out for 23 minutes and wake up in a pile of ash that used to be called your house. In a style that’s often defined by formula, Trumpeting Ecstasy proves Full of Hell’s adventurousness is a defining factor in their ability to stand out in the scene.
Hiboux's release of Command The Earth To Swallow Me Up is by all means an excellent addition to the growing New Zealand post-rock scene. However, the motifs surrounding it are surprisingly as interesting and subtle as the finer parts of the music itself. It wasn’t an easy journey to get Command The Earth To Swallow Me Up released however, as bassist Duncan Nairn and guitarist Bern Stock explain to LIFE IS NOISE.
LIFE IS NOISE Publicity is proud to announce that Hiboux have locked in dates for their upcoming Australian and New Zealand tour, taking their entrancing instrumental post-rock to selected venues across June and July in support of their album Command The Earth To Swallow Me Up.
With New Zealand’s post-rock scene becoming more and more prominent every day, Hiboux recently broke forth with an epic volume to the country’s musical history with Command The Earth To Swallow Me Up, released in March of 2017. The album flows upon ears as naturally and gracefully as water from a mountain stream falling into the sea – important to note the same can be said about their cunning use of key changes and transitions.
“Command The Earth To Swallow Me Up is a solid debut from a band that sounds like it has a lot to offer. Listening to the album as a whole carries the listener through dreamy sets of swells that evoke strong imagery. It is most definitely the kind of album you can lose yourself in; just drift away and get taken for a ride.” – Arctic Drones
Hiboux have taken extra lengths to make sure that the versatile spirit of the music transfers from album to stage seamlessly, investing years in chasing the perfect sound for their debut record. Making a conscious effort to make the record sound ‘live’, guitarist Bern Stock confesses that he spent upward of a year and a half carefully engaging with his pedals and amps to create a tone that masterfully fluctuates between stampeding heavy segments and floating lighter moments, all the while remaining truly unique to the band.
“Each track is distinctly different from the previous, but they fit together giving a real sense of journey. When you close your eyes you can imagine countless scenarios that this soundtrack would fit with, and that is the beauty of instrumental work; without lyrics, the listener is free to choose the emotion and meaning that fits them individually.” – Music.net.nz
Hiboux’s open, encompassing sound is something worth experiencing live – the spirit of the music provokes a trance like concentration out of the listener and needs to be felt first hand. Make sure you witness these shows through early June through to late July while you have the chance.
Catch Hiboux at one of the following dates:
Friday June 2 - Space Academy, Christchurch
Saturday June 3 - Re:Fuel, Dunedin
Saturday June 10 - Wine Cellar in Auckland
Saturday July 1 - Valhalla in Wellington
Thursday July 20 - Frankie's Pizza, Sydney
Friday July 21 - The Townie, Sydney
Saturday July 22 – The Last Chance Rock & Roll Bar, Melbourne
Tickets available from the venues.
If one statement can be made about Boris, it’s that they aren’t afraid to experiment with their sound. From their release of Absolutego in 1996 and onward, watching Boris release album after album on a fantastic genre bender was a treat to ears across the globe. Every release sounded new, like they were making some challenge to the standards of the musical world around them whilst posing the same challenge to themselves.
Just over 20 years and 28 albums later (not including collaborations), Boris are still alive and kicking. They’ve just announced the release of their upcoming album Dear along with celebrating the 10th birthday of Pink on a gargantuan world tour, only now reaching Australian shores. LIFE IS NOISE caught up with multi-instrumentalist Takeshi for a chat about the making of Pink and what makes Japan’s masters of experimentation tick.
Tangled Thoughts of Leaving have immaculate abilities in the realm of composition, so it's only natural that they've held their taste in music to a similar standard. Ahead of their upcoming support slot on Boris' Pink 10th anniversary tour, Luke Pollard of Tangled Thoughts of Leaving has collaborated with the rest of the band to put together this list of carefully curated music which has influenced the band in some way. You'll find a selection dedicated to melody, tension and dynamics - and hopefully something new to sink your ears into. Listen on.